Trump on Middle East peace: “Stranger things have happened”
Abbas tells UN: Israel undermines ‘the idea of the two-state solution’In an aggressive speech in front of the UN General Assembly, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said that despite the Palestinian attempts to achieve peace, Israel “is undermining the idea of the two-state solution.” Abbas also said that Israel is playing with fire when it attempts to change the status quo at the Temple Mount.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas addressed the UN General Assembly on Wednesday evening, calling on the world to recognize a Palestinian state and on Israel to “end the occupation and recognize the 1967 borders.” Abbas claimed: “We recognize Israel within the 1967 borders but Israel refuses to recognize them. The Israeli government continues the settlement building and the fight against the UN resolutions. In its policy, it’s undermining the idea of the two-state solution and ending the occupation.”
“Instead of dealing with the conflict, Israel is trying to divert the international attention to unimportant matters,” the PA leader said. “Israel is aware that the occupation encourages violence. The military occupation has continued for over half a century. It’s the international community’s responsibility to bring the illegal occupation and the illegal activities against my nation to an end.”
Abbas added: “We’ve tried with all of our strength, along with the Arab states, to achieve peace with our Israeli neighbors. In accordance with the Arab Peace Initiative, the Arab world would recognize Israel in exchange for normalized relations. What was Israel’s response to that? Israel was not interested.”
After he expressed optimism during his meeting with US President Donald Trump, Abbas attacked Israel’s policy regarding the Temple Mount. Abbas said that Israel is playing with fire by attempting to change the status quo at Al-Aqsa. “We are warning the Israeli government of the consequences of this aggression,” he added. “Don't ever try to start a religious war with us, it’s dangerous for you and us. Our conflict is political, leave it this way.”
Israeli Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon responded to Abbas’ speech. “Mahmoud Abbas has spread falsehoods from the UN podium which encourage hate, instead of ending the education towards violence in the PA,” he said. “Today’s lies and excuses have proven once again that the Palestinian leadership is a serial evader of peace.”
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